The IFP calls for calm, and for residents of all 10 Wards within the eSikhaleni area to act with restraint, as strike action due to the non-delivery of water and all other services by the Umhlatuze Local Municipality in the King Cetshwayo District (KCD) continues.
While we fully support the residents – who are angered by months of poor service delivery, weeks without clean running water and a near total collapse of cooperative governance within the Umhlatuze Local Council – we urge residents not to destroy public infrastructure, nor resort to any form of violence.
All allegations of corruption made by the community towards the ANC are valid and cannot be left unheard and unresolved.
Therefore, the IFP calls on all stakeholders, in particular, the Minster of Water and Sanitation, Lindiwe Sisulu, KZN Cooperative Governance MEC Sipho Hlomuka, the KZN MEC for Community Safety and Liaison, and the Mayor of Umhlatuze, Cllr Mduduzi Mhlongo, to launch an urgent investigation into alleged corruption and the bungling of tenders, which were intended to supply water tankers in the area.
Further to this, the IFP calls on all law enforcement agencies, together with the MEC for Community Safety and Liaison, to clamp down on and arrest anyone found conducting themselves criminally within the Municipality. Acts such as tampering with water valves, destruction of property and officials soliciting bribes from residents cannot be tolerated. Any and all criminal activities highlighted by the community must be investigated and dealt with swiftly.
Urgent action is required by all spheres of government, as this is not the first time the Municipality has dismally failed at delivering services to residents. Businesses and cooperatives have been severely affected by the collapse in service delivery. We urge the Council and relevant MECs in KZN to ensure that the community is provided with some form of temporary relief while an investigation is ongoing.
The IFP leadership in Umhlatuze will hold a meeting with all local stakeholders in an attempt to ensure that efforts by the Provincial government are ramped up, and to assist the Municipality in ensuring that the residents’ constitutional right to clean drinking water is upheld, and that service delivery continues in the area.
Xolani Ngwezi, MP
IFP Spokesperson in the National Council of Provinces
Chairperson: IFP Umhlatuze Constituency
076 975 5555